Findings demonstrated in the CHUMS project, coordinated by Vectos in 2014 and funded through the Intelligent Energy Europe (IEE) programme, show the considerable potential for employers to reduce the number of cars at worksites through low cost measures. Whilst for local authorities, maximising the carpooling opportunity, is a very cost effective way to cut urban traffic congestion.
Socialcar aims to take carpooling to the next level, establishing it as a mainstream transport mode, accepted as the norm in our mass transit systems of the future.
At the heart of Socialcar will be a real-time Intelligent Transport System (ITS). By fully integrating carpooling with public transport networks and information management systems, carpooling can extend public transport to areas of cities where it has proved impossible to operate services without prohibitively high public subsidy.
The information source for Socialcar options will be through social media and when combined with open data sets for public transport and crowdsourcing, it will provide people with real time travel options for public transport and carpooling.
Socialcar is aimed at providing the platform to enhance current carpooling providers in their respective local markets. The multi-lingual system will combine public transport data (provided by operators), private data (provided by car poolers), real time traffic information (generated by web communities of travellers) and exploit existing services and social networks to provide information and alerts through static and mobile devices.
The system will be tested in 10 European cities which currently offer carpooling services at different levels of maturity. The aim is to develop a system that can work in all cities across Europe; with a clear cost benefit analysis and business model to warrant further investment and expansion.
Vectos will be playing a leading role in the Socialcar project. In addition to identifying the types of potential users, Vectos leads the project to define the stakeholders for Socialcar and a common European business strategy for its take-up. We will work with the 10 cities to apply and refine the model, before developing a medium to long term business strategy for commercialising Socialcar on European and World markets.
Smart carpooling will offer integration with public transport, placing it firmly into the mainstream of travel modes in the cities of the future.
* SocialCar Knowledge Agent for businesses and investments Paul Curtis gave a snapshot of SocialCar during this years annual conference of POLIS. 400 mobility professionals across Europe and beyond have come together to debate on urban and regional mobility. The conference took place on 19 and 20 November 2015 in Brussels.